Brussels, 15 December 2022 (TDI): The European Union (EU) and Cambodia have agreed to continue their positive communication and cooperation. The commitment was reached on December 13 in Brussels, Belgium.

Valdis Dombrovskis, European Commission Executive Vice President and Commissioner for Trade, and Sorasak Pan, Cambodian Minister of Commerce were present during the development.

Cambodia’s Economic Recovery

Using the Strategic Framework and Programmes for Economic Recovery in the Context of Living with COVID-19 in a New Normal 2021–2023, Pan Sorasak spoke about the situation of Cambodia’s economic recovery with the return of full socioeconomic activity as well as restoration efforts.

This focuses on many priority sectors in response to trade and investment development, cooperation, and towards graduation from the least developed country (LDC) status.

Moreover, the Minister thanked the EU and the people of Europe for their financial and technical support for the growth of major Cambodian industries.

These industries cover commerce, agriculture, health, rural development, human resource training, and so forth.

Cooperation between the EU and Cambodia

Valdis Dombrovskis underlined that despite difficulties brought on by the COVID-19 outbreak, there is progress in the bilateral commercial cooperation between Cambodia and the EU.

Furthermore, Valdis noted that Cambodia will encounter challenges after leaving the LDC category. Despite this, he confirmed that the EU would continue to support LDCs, including Cambodia, through the Generalized Scheme of Preferences Plus (GSP+) in the future.

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In this regard, the EU also committed to continuing to offer technical assistance and capacity-building programmes to Cambodia. This will support the development of the country’s sustainable, inclusive, and resilient economy.

Regarding regional trade cooperation, the EU side emphasized the draft Plan of Action to Implement the ASEAN-EU Strategic Partnership (2023–2027) and the ASEAN-EU Consultation, a roadmap for ASEAN-EU Free Trade Agreement negotiations.

Also, the EU side recalled its support for Cambodia’s hosting of the ASEAN Economic Ministers’ (AEM) Meeting.